Feature

From Meddling to Preaching

Three Ways to Expose the Partly Natural Family by David Mills

When a pastor says something in a sermon that you do not like, goes the old joke, he has “gone from preaching to meddling.” He has stopped telling pleasant and comforting stories (or enjoyably convicting stories about the sins you don’t commit) and started interfering with your life.

Many traditional Christians and cultural conservatives love what the family scholar Allan Carlson has called “the Natural Family” as a theory, because Americans love anything “natural.” It seems more direct, more genuine, more authentic, untainted by commerce and calculation. And it has its political uses: They love to appeal to . . .

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David Mills has been editor of Touchstone and executive editor of First Things.


more on family from the online archives

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Maternity as Theophany

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32.4—July/August 2019

An Alien Warfare

Today's Culture Wars Are Both Ancient & Modern by Allan C. Carlson

32.1—January/February 2019

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more from the online archives

20.4—May 2007

Children of the Reformation

A Short & Surprising History of Protestantism & Contraception by Allan C. Carlson

14.2—March 2001

The God of Princes

on the Political Use of Religion by Wilfred M. McClay

32.5—September/October 2019

Make Men Pious Again

2018 Conference Talk by C. R. Wiley